Restaurant body to defend service charge issue, says it has legal right
By Lokmat English Desk | Published: May 28, 2022 11:16 AM2022-05-28T11:16:14+5:302022-05-28T11:27:34+5:30
Hotel and restaurant billing is our legal right and a voluntary option, said the leading association of hoteliers. This ...
Hotel and restaurant billing is our legal right and a voluntary option, said the leading association of hoteliers. This is likely to lead to a dispute between the government and hoteliers over service charges.
The government has clarified that whether to pay service charges is optional and depends entirely on the decision of the customer. But now hoteliers have also clarified their role. The Federation of Hotels and Restaurants Association of India (FHRAI), which represents hoteliers across the country, has expressed support for the recovery of service charges. According to the association, hoteliers have a legal right to charge a service charge on the bill. The group said it was ready to discuss the issue at a meeting convened by the government on June 2.
The service charge is a beneficiary payment for hoteliers. It benefited the hotel staff and other arrangements. However, it is up to the restaurant to decide whether or not to charge a service fee on the bill. If a customer objects to it, the service charge can be deducted from the bill, said Gurubaksh Singh Kohli, Vice President, FHRAI.
The service charge is also referred to as a 'tip', which is mentioned in the menu card and is also known to the customers, FHRAI said. The Ministry of Consumer Affairs had issued a directive in 2017 that the service fee in the bill should be left blank and the charges should be accepted as per the wishes of the customers.
The DOCA has convened a meeting of the National Restaurant Association on June 2 to address the issue, which is being raised by the general public on social media. The meeting will discuss various customer complaints, other charges and service charges in restaurant bills, not informing customers that service charges are optional and issues regarding customers who do not pay service charges.Open in app